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Overheard 2 (2011) (DVD) (Hong Kong Version) DVD Region All

Lau Ching Wan (Actor) | Daniel Wu (Actor) | Louis Koo (Actor) | Kenneth Tsang (Actor)
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YesAsia Editorial Description

In 2009, Overheard broke the box office record for a crime film in China and showed Chinese filmmakers that even police-related crime films can be made in the strict Chinese censorship system. Two years later, producer Derek Yee and writer-directors Alan Mak and Felix Chong (Infernal Affairs) reunite with stars Lau Ching Wan, Louis Koo, and Daniel Wu for Overheard 2, a thematic follow-up with different characters and a different story. The directing duo once again explores the nature of greed in the stock market, but they shift their focus to a hot social topic in Hong Kong: The power of the ultra-wealthy over society. In Mak and Chong's world, these villains' weapons of choice are price gouging and collusion, and their power reaches so far that they can control the entire economy with a few phone calls. After standing on the same side of the law in the first film, the three leading men go head-to-head against each other this time as three players in a complex cat-and-mouse game that will reveal a conspiracy involving these 21st century villains. With various twists and turns along the way, the three men can turn from allies to adversaries at any moment.

In addition to the three stars, Overheard 2 also co-stars Huang Yi (The Road Less Traveled), Michelle Ye (Hi, Fidelity), Wilfred Lau (Fire of Conscience), Joman Chiang (The Drunkard), as well as veteran actors like Kenneth Tsang and Wu Fung. With an all-star cast, topical themes, and explosive action sequences (designed by Dion Lam), Overheard 2 was a massive box office hit in both Hong Kong and China, more than doubling the box office gross of its predecessor.

Manson (Lau Ching Wan) is a successful stockbroker with powerful, secretive employers. After an automobile accident, Manson discovers that someone has wiretapped into his entire life. An investigation by righteous police officer Jack (Louis Koo) reveals that the man behind this complex surveillance system is Joe (Daniel Wu), an ex-soldier with a dark past. At the same time, Jack also discovers the existence of the Landlords' Club, a group of experienced stock fixers with enormous power over the stock market. What does Joe want with the Landlords' Club, and how is he connected to it?

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Technical Information

Product Title: Overheard 2 (2011) (DVD) (Hong Kong Version) 竊聽風雲2 (2011) (DVD) (香港版) 窃听风云2 (2011) (DVD) (香港版) 竊聽風雲2 (2011) (DVD) (香港版) Overheard 2 (2011) (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)
Also known as: OVERHEARD II 竊聽風雲 二 窃听风云 二 OVERHEARD II OVERHEARD II
Artist Name(s): Lau Ching Wan (Actor) | Daniel Wu (Actor) | Louis Koo (Actor) | Kenneth Tsang (Actor) | Bowie Wu (Actor) | Felix Lok (Actor) | Lisa Chiao Chiao (Actor) | Crystal Huang (Actor) | Michelle Ye (Actor) | Jiang Yi (Actor) | Wilfred Lau (Actor) | Anthony Pun 劉 青雲 (Actor) | 吳彥祖 (Actor) | 古天樂 (Actor) | 曾 江 (Actor) | 胡楓 (Actor) | 駱應鈞 (Actor) | 焦姣 (Actor) | 黃奕 (Actor) | 葉 璇 (Actor) | 江毅 (Actor) | 劉浩龍 (Actor) | 潘耀明 刘 青云 (Actor) | 吴彦祖 (Actor) | 古天乐 (Actor) | 曾 江 (Actor) | 胡枫 (Actor) | 骆应钧 (Actor) | 焦姣 (Actor) | 黄奕 (Actor) | 叶璇 (Actor) | 江毅 Yi (Actor) | 刘浩龙 (Actor) | 潘耀明 劉青雲(ラウ・チンワン) (Actor) | 呉彦祖 (ダニエル・ウー)  (Actor) | 古天樂 (ルイス・クー) (Actor) | 曾江(ケネス・ツァン) (Actor) | 胡楓(ウー・フォン) (Actor) | Felix Lok (Actor) | Lisa Chiao Chiao (Actor) | 黄奕(ホァン・イー) (Actor) | 葉璇 (ミッシェル・イップ) (Actor) | Jiang Yi (Actor) | 劉浩龍(ウィルフレッド・ラウ) (Actor) | Anthony Pun Lau Ching Wan (Actor) | Daniel Wu (Actor) | Louis Koo (Actor) | Kenneth Tsang (Actor) | Bowie Wu (Actor) | Felix Lok (Actor) | Lisa Chiao Chiao (Actor) | Crystal Huang (Actor) | Michelle Ye (Actor) | Jiang Yi (Actor) | Wilfred Lau (Actor) | Anthony Pun
Director: Alan Mak | Felix Chong 麥 兆輝 | 莊 文強 麦兆辉 | 庄 文强 麥兆輝(アラン・マック) | 莊文強(フェリックス・チョン) Alan Mak | Felix Chong
Action Director: Dion Lam 林迪安 林迪安 Dion Lam Dion Lam
Producer: Derek Yee 爾 冬陞 尔 冬升 爾冬隆(イー・トンシン) Derek Yee
Release Date: 2011-10-28
Language: Cantonese, Mandarin
Subtitles: English, Traditional Chinese
Country of Origin: Hong Kong
Picture Format: NTSC What is it?
Aspect Ratio: 1.78 : 1
Widescreen Anamorphic: Yes
Sound Information: Dolby Digital 2.0, Dolby Digital EX(TM) / THX Surround EX(TM), DTS Extended Surround(TM) / DTS-ES(TM)
Disc Format(s): DVD
Region Code: All Region What is it?
Rating: IIB
Duration: 120 (mins)
Publisher: Panorama (HK)
Package Weight: 120 (g)
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1025608280

Product Information

Screenwriter/Director: Chong Men Keung , Mak Siu Fai
Producer: Yee Tung Sing

LAW Man-seng (Lau Ching-wan), a reputable security dealer was involved in a car accident. Police officer HO Chi-keung (Louis Koo) is assigned to the case when military surveillance devices were found in LAW's wrecked sports car. During the investigation, Ho finds that Law has some offshore funds of unknown sou rces and that an unknown person Joe (Daniel Wu) is wiretapping not only Law, but other members of 'Landlord Club', a legendary club with members from top business tycoons and entrepreneurs in town.
Additional Information may be provided by the manufacturer, supplier, or a third party, and may be in its original language

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Awards

This film has received 12 award nomination(s). All Award-Winning Asian Films

YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features

Professional Review of "Overheard 2 (2011) (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)"

October 27, 2011

This professional review refers to Overheard 2 (2011) (Blu-ray) (Hong Kong Version)
Viva white collar crime! Prolific filmmaking duo Alan Mak and Felix Chong return for Overheard 2, the sequel to the entertaining if unmemorable 2009 thriller Overheard. Also back are producer Derek Yee and the powerhouse cast of Louis Koo, Lau Ching-Wan and Daniel Wu. However, this is a sequel-in-name-only, as Koo, Lau and Wu's characters from the first film may not be healthy enough for sequel duty. The Spoiler Police dictate that I zip it about what happened in the original Overheard, but their characters - three cops who played the stock market using financial advice obtained from wiretapping - were required to be punished via SARFT's much-discussed content rules. Long story short: the guys got theirs and are unavailable for this outing. Justice has been served - or at least been given lip service.

But having these actors play new characters is more than fine. Undoubtedly three of Hong Kong's top leading men, Louis Koo, Lau Ching-Wan and Daniel Wu possess range and charisma, so bringing them back in new roles allows for some fun character reversals. Daniel Wu and Louis Koo were the weaker guys in Overheard, but this time they’re tough if not all-out badasses. Wu is Joe, the films seeming villain, who eavesdrops on a circle of stock fixers called "The Landlord Club." Joe's motives are murky and only gradually explained, but he exhibits all sorts of kick-ass behavior like beating up cops, causing explosions in Central and eluding multiple pursuers on a motorcycle. Joe also has a good side, taking care of his Alzheimer's-suffering mother (Lisa Chiao Chiao) and even her elderly friends. The role calls for Wu to be both a man of action and emotion, and he assertively covers the range.

On the other side is Lau Ching-Wan as harried stockbroker Manson Law. A member of the Landlord Club, Manson's not all bad, as his reasons for crime are due to loyalty and care for his fellow Hong Kongers. As detailed in the film’s numerous expository passages, the Landlord Club's initial purpose was to manipulate stocks in favor of local businesses, sticking it to foreign parties profiting parasitically off of Hong Kong business owners. Manson joined the Landlord Club as a replacement for his deceased mentor Szema (Wu Fung), and Manson’s loyalty to Szema partially compensates for his misgivings about the Club's illegal activities. But with Joe’s invasive surveillance, things are about to get more dangerous for Manson. What’s Joe after and will the Landlord Club give in? How will the fallout affect Manson and his loving wife Emily (Huang Yi)? And what about Security Bureau officer Jack Ho (Louis Koo), who doggedly pursues both Manson and Joe?

The financial hook in Overheard 2 is a smart one. Alan Mak and Felix Chong give detailed support to their conflicts and characters, catering especially to money-obsessed locals affected by the region's many financial crises - which pretty much means everyone in Hong Kong. Particularly creative is the idea that the Landlord Club engages in insider trading in the name of nationalist pride, making the story richer and much more than just a black versus white conflict. Joe might be a criminal, but he obviously has a decent streak, while the corrupt Landlord Club began with the Robin Hood-like intentions. Even Louis Koo's cop character is not exempt from this gray shading; Jack Ho is a cop that's so righteous that once upon a time he even arrested his own wife (Michelle Ye) - and he's still unhappy with himself about it. As in many of their previous works, Alan Mak and Felix Chong give their characters easily identifiable personal stakes, setting up everything to play out amidst the film’s larger crime storyline.

Then the gears begin to grind. A storyline with this much backstory requires tons of exposition, and Mak and Chong serve it up clumsily. Characters in Overheard 2 tend to explain stuff to people who already know what's going on, rather than people who don't. For example, after a moment of intimacy, Manson explains to his wife about their history with the Landlord Club - but she already knows everything that he’s telling her. Manson should instead be explaining things to cop Jack Ho, who obviously would be very interested in the info. Of course, keeping the cop in the dark helps extend the film’s tension, but using pillow talk as an opportunity for audience-friendly exposition seems forced. These are the narrative problems that Mak and Chong should have solved while making the film, if not through the script then through other filmmaking means. The two are fine writers and are great with characters, but technique and style are not their strong suits. Maybe Andrew Lau could have helped them here.

Having the actors switch around their personalities for the sequel is an entertaining touch, and while the results are successful, they're perhaps less than they might have been. Wu is perfectly cast in his role, but the film might have been better had Lau Ching-Wan and Louis Koo exchanged roles, with Lau playing the cop and Koo the stockbroker. Lau could have played Koo's righteous yet self-abased cop with more subtlety and strength than Koo does, and Lau's harried stockbroker would have been a perfect fit for Koo, who does sweaty, jittery paranoia so very well. Having the actors play the characters they're best suited for would have given the film an extra, much-needed layer of intensity. This is a difficult complaint to make, however, as it's obvious that the filmmakers made an effort to change-up the actors’ roles when developing the sequel. The acting is still quite good anyway, so they get an "A" regardless.

The actors and the storyline are enough to bring Overheard 2 across the finish line in solid fashion. The film still has much to quibble over; the most felt plot twists are not the most important ones, and Mak and Chong miss some opportunities to really nail the drama. However, Overheard 2 does improve upon the original in some very key ways. Overheard had moral tension but little actual action, while the sequel gratefully notches up the visceral thrills. The first half of the film features a number of involving chase sequences, smartly engaging the audience before the exposition arrives to slow things down. Also, Kenneth Tsang entertainingly chews scenery as Landlord Club leader Tony, somewhat but not quite making up for the absence of Michael Wong's hilarious villain from the original. While not exemplary, Overheard 2 is a convincingly solid vehicle for its A-list triumvirate of actors, and another wise commercial move from Messrs. Mak, Chong and Yee. Overheard 3, anyone? They're already working on it.

by Kozo - LoveHKFilm.com

This original content has been created by or licensed to YesAsia.com, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of YesAsia.com.

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